After four absolutely boring division series matchups, we could have two outstanding Championship Series, which get underway tonight at Citizens Bank Park. You can read all about it here, here, and here.
Or I can just break it down right here:
RED SOX VS. RAYS:
Before the postseason I picked the Red Sox to come out of the AL. I think I am going to go back on that. I didn't like the way Beckett looked in Game 3 and losing Lowell will be tough, especially since Ortiz, Youkilis and Pedroia did not hit a lick in the first two series. Lester will get his wins, but I am not sold on either Beckett or Matsuzaka. You almost got the feeling that the Angels were defeated before they even took the field against the Red Sox. The Rays are not going to be intimidated. They don't know any better. Crazy as it sounds, since the Rays played before empty seats for the better part of the season, but homefield advantage is going to be huge this series. Boston won just once in its eight visits to the Trop, while Tampa was a paltry 2-7 in Fenway. I am expecting a great series, but Tampa is going to pull it out in the end.
Prediction: RAYS IN SEVEN
DODGERS VS. PHILS:
I picked Philadelphia to come out of the NL before the postseason began, so I have to stay with that, but I think they will have their hands full here. Normally Philly feasts on righties, but Lowe has kept them in the park over the course of his career. I think Lowe is going to be real good in this series, but I am not so sure about Billingsley and Kuroda. Chase Utley has to come alive and I think he will. He hit the Dodgers pretty well during the season and I expect him to come up big here. Also, look for a few Ryan Howard moonshots in the first two games of this series to set the tone. Philly is not going to make as many mistakes as Chicago did. Plus with a series win under their belt, they won't be as tight at the plate. Lidge will be shaky, but until he blows one you can't complain. It should be a great series, but the Phils are better from top-to-bottom.
Prediction: PHILADELPHIA IN SIX